Thursday, July 2, 2009

David and Goliath

As I write this post, yet another torrential thunderstorm is beating my gardens to a pulp.Thankfully, I took this group of pictures a few days ago when, although the sun wasn't shining, at least there was a break in the rain.

It seems that inevitably there comes a point every summer when winter's optimistic imaginings collide with the reality of trying to manipulate an essentially ungovernable force. I'm afraid that once again I have reached that point and find myself wondering why I continue to invest my time and energy on such a fragile endeavor.

Just outside my window a formerly upright stand of lychnis Coronaria is virtually horizontal. Flamboyant dinner plate dahlia blossoms hang from broken stems. The double cosmos that I lovingly started from seed in my basement are plastered on the ground. And the arching sprays of sea foam roses that blanket the slope in the Blue and White garden have been reduced to a sodden tangle.

Each year brings a new set of battles;glutenous groundhogs, unexpected frosts, drought, wind storms, and of course a variety of insect infestations. If I sound a bit demoralized, perhaps at the moment I am. Yet I know that as soon as the sun comes out and the ground dries a bit, I'll venture back out to the garden armed with stakes, twine, and pruning shears, determined to repair the damage.

Despite the perception that it is genteel avocation, serious gardening is not for quitters or the faint of heart. As with the proverbial conflict between David and Goliath, courage and optimism are necessary attributes if one is to continually engage Nature on such an intimate level.

So Perhaps as an optimistic nod to more benevolent weather, next week I'll reward myself with a trip to the nursery to pick out a handful of new treasures.

Though my yoga teacher councils me to live in the moment, the garden encourages me to look toward the future. Here's to sunnier skies and gentle breezes. Namaste.

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